MEDICAL PHOTO NHS LOTHIAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MEDICAL PHOTO NHS LOTHIAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Scoliosis of the spine. X-ray showing lateral (sideways) curvature of the human spine, known as scoliosis. Here, curvature is seen among the thoracic vertebrae (above centre) in the region of the ribcage. The pelvis is at bottom. Scoliosis typically begins in childhood, progressing to an S-shaped spine until the age when growth stops. The condition may result from congenital abnormal- ity of the spine; from polio; arthritis; or due to one leg being shorter than the other. Slight scoliosis of unknown cause may not require treat- ment. Progressive scoliosis may need spinal immobilization with a brace or surgery.
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